the ubiquitous list

I hate list posts. Especially with the “tag me and X other people and pass along” format of Tumblr, they look too much like those awful chain emails of the 90s for me to stomach. And the idea of taking things out of context and leaving them that way nettles me.

Obviously we’re heading toward a “but” here.

But, then, this one actually seemed primed to make me have to think, and make decisions I don’t care to make. So I’m doing it. And providing context. Because.

Top 10 Fictional Characters (uggggggh, we must choose only 10?)

1.) Egwene al’Vere (Wheel of Time)

2.) Alistair Theirin (Dragon Age)

3.) Ammar ibn Khairan (Lions of Al-Rassan)

4.) Rodrigo Belmonte (Lions of Al-Rassan)

5.) Dorian Pavus (Dragon Age)

6.) Dianora (Tigana)

7.) Fawkes (Fallout 3)

8.) Masterharper Robinton (Pern)

9.) William of Baskerville (The Name of the Rose)

10.) Piera (Malafrena)

I’ll give you why, but below a cut, because you shouldn’t spoil yourself for these people. They’re great.

1.) For the whole last few books, but especially in the Tower, when she earns the respect of the people who hated her, and refuses to sit on the pillow the novices risk offering her, though she’s raw and it’s agony. Because she is just that badass.

2.) Because I was lonely as fuck in a place that I hated and he cheered me up.

3.) Because of who he loves and how.

4.) Because of who he loves and how.

5.) For his flaws, and his biting self-awareness of them and for the fact that we aren’t asked to pretend that being gay is one of those flaws. And neither does he. Also he’s one of the few dashing characters that don’t fill me with disdain. Again: self-awareness.

6.) For wanting revenge, refusing to exact it, and being willing to acknowledge to herself why exactly that is. And then paying the price for that. And being ferocious, 100% of the time, in different ways.

7.) For being a bright spot in that shit landscape. And for having your back. How many times did I replay to make sure he didn’t die? He doesn’t shine in memory the way he once did, because right after FO3 I played DA:O and all the feels went there for awhile. But I remember loving him once, so here he remains.

8.) Specifically, for what he even thinks to himself at one point he could to do with Menolly, and for not doing it, and for being fucking awesome instead. There’s a moment when he’s looking at her, leaning over a sand table full of vellum, and thinking “this is what I would have done, years ago. And I’m not going to do it now.” And he looks after her instead. And I would look forward to that part on all my childish re-readings of those books.

9.) Because he’s brilliant. And I am a sap for brilliant mentor/ earnest mentee relationships. *cough* See point 8.

10.) Because: “If this was her world, she was strong enough to live in it. For any act done consciously may be defiant, may be independent, may change life utterly. But one can only act thus if one knows there is no safety. So she thought, that Epiphany night, looking up at Orion and the other stars. One must wait outside. There is no hiding away from storm, waste, injustice, death. There is is no shelter, no stopping, only a pretense, a mean, stupid pretense of being safe and letting time and evil pass by outside. But we are all outside, Piera thought, and all defenseless. There is no safe house but death. Nothing of our own building will protect us, not the jails, nor the palaces, nor the comfortable houses. But the grandeur of knowing that, the pride and grandeur of being on one’s own at last, alone, under the enormous and indifferent sky, unhoused and unprotected! To be nothing, a girl, confused, grieved, frightened, foolish, shivering in the January frost, all that, yes, but also to learn at last the stature of her spirit: to come into her inheritance.”

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